The Diploma Programme is designed as an academically challenging and balanced programme of education that prepares Senior School students for success at university and life beyond. The programme is usually taught over two years and has gained recognition and respect from the world’s leading universities.
Since the late 1960s, the programme has:
- Provided a package of education that balances subject breadth and depth, and considers the nature of knowledge across disciplines through the unique Theory of Knowledge course.
- Encouraged international-mindedness in IB students, starting with a foundation in their own language and culture.
- Developed a positive attitude to learning that prepares students for university education.
- Gained a reputation for its rigorous external assessment with published global standards, making this a qualification welcomed by universities worldwide.
- Emphasised the development of the whole student – physically, intellectually, emotionally and ethically.
Diploma Programme students study six courses at higher level or standard level. Students must choose one subject from each of groups 1 to 5, thus ensuring breadth of experience in languages, social studies, the experimental sciences and mathematics.
The sixth subject may be an arts subject chosen from group 6, or the student may choose another subject from groups 1 to 5 for specific university requirements. Three or four subjects are taken at higher level (recommended 240 teaching hours), with the others taken at standard level (150 teaching hours).
- Theory of knowledge is a course designed to encourage each student to reflect on the nature of knowledge by critically examining different ways of knowing (perception, emotion, language and reason) and different kinds of knowledge (scientific, artistic, mathematical and historic).
- Creativity, Action, Service requires that students actively learn from the experience of doing real tasks beyond the classroom. Students can combine all three components or do activities related to each one separately.
- The Extended Essay is a requirement for students to engage in independent research through an in-depth study relating to one of the subjects they are studying.
Though demanding, the Diploma is not an elitist programme for gifted children but is a course of studies for the organised and dedicated student who has a strong desire to learn.
Diploma and State Curriculum
Diploma students enjoy the same opportunities as Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE) graduates, with the additional benefits of an internationally recognised education. PLC will still offer the WACE (TEE). By adding the Diploma we are now able to offer a choice of education for our students. PLC will provide advice on WACE or Diploma, related to the individual needs and abilities of each student.
Diploma and University Entrance
The Diploma gives students a genuine, transferable, internationally recognised qualification that provides direct access to universities worldwide. Fifty-seven universities across Australia accept the Diploma, including the University of Western Australia (UWA), Murdoch, Curtin, Edith Cowan University (ECU) and University of Notre Dame. Diploma results are automatically converted to Australian universities' entry equivalents.
IB Diploma Programme
General Regulations: Diploma